Learning about an Emergency Management Plan GET READY NOW!

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1 GET READY NOW! This supplemental document was designed to be used in conjunction with the Guide to an Emergency Management Plan (October 2014). It is meant to further support the emergency planning process by leading emergency teams through the application of the guide. Every organization / company/ business / family should have an emergency plan. Every Healthcare organization must have an emergency plan, as required by the Multi-Sector Service Accountability Agreement. By September 30th 2015, the ED/CEO of each organization with an M-SAA will be required to sign off that the organization has an HSP-specific emergency plan in place. Emergency management planning does not prevent emergencies, but it does help protect lives, equipment, the environment and property. How quickly your organization is back in business following an emergency will also depend on the emergency plan built and tested prior to the disaster. Preparing makes good business sense. FACT: Research has shown that workplaces that have developed effective emergency management plans are capable of resuming normal operations six times faster and suffer 70 per cent fewer losses when facing natural or man-made emergencies. Every situation is unique. Each organization will be better prepared if it plans and puts its own emergency procedures in place. This guideline document provided by Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network (TC LHIN) outlines measures that can be taken to learn how to personalize and develop your own plan. Useful links connect you to more detailed information and the complete Guide to an Emergency Management Plan will help you to build your emergency plan, step by step. The page numbers (in italics) refer to this detailed Guide. I A PLANNING TEAM Bring together co-workers from all levels and departments of your organization and create a planning team. The members of this team will do the research and assessments to build the emergency plan, test it, improve it and keep it updated. They will be key actors of the chain of command. The size of this team does not have to be enormous, but should be proportionate to the overall size of your organization and client base. Pages II SERVICES / BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLANNING 1 - Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (HIRA) - Each organization should complete a basic HIRA and use it to tailor an emergency management plan specific to its needs. Pages 8-10

2 Hazard Identification: Consider all types of disasters (potential and actual, man-made and natural threats) from within the workplace and from the surrounding community and geographic region (e.g. nearby river or forest, annual mass gatherings or festivals, subway or embassy proximity). Currently the Province of Ontario has identified 37 types of hazards, classified according to their general source: natural, technological or human-caused. They are listed here: /hira_2012.html Priorities: Protection of human life, support of health and safety of personnel, clients and patients; protection of the organization s assets; maintenance of communication with patients/clients and other partners; assessment of damage; restoration of operations. Risk Assessment: Consider the likelihood of the hazards potentially resulting in an emergency and the degree of risk they present to your organization. The risks will vary according to the size, location and nature of your operation. Review your activities/business processes and identify priorities and all operations critical to services/business continuity. Estimate the number of people or physical assets that are likely to be threatened as well as the consequences and impact of the emergency. 2 - Based on the HIRA: - Secure and protect your location: install / check smoke alarms, fire detectors and fire sprinklers; evaluate physical security and systems to prevent unauthorized access. Review insurance coverage. - Determine the staff, building, machinery, equipment, materials, supplies, computers, electronic information and vital records that are critical to keep the business operating. - Develop a strategy for relocation to another facility. - Make a list of your clients/patients/partners and plan on ways to serve them during and after a disaster. - Identify your partners, contractors, critical suppliers and other resources that you work with on a regular basis. Consider the impact that the disaster may have on them and identify alternate sources for these resources. - Establish Emergency Mutual Aid Agreement with other organizations. Pages Establish a chain of command for business continuity during an emergency: Designate the Incident Commander responsible for the overall management and detail responsibilities and authority to make certain decisions. Identify backup personnel for each function if your organization is of sufficient size. Pages 12; 22-35

3 3 Write a Crisis Communication Plan - Detail how you will communicate with your personnel and with your clients/patients; with local authorities, partners, contractors, suppliers, other resources and with the media. - Information/ communications must focus on interest of employees and clients/patients protection and well-being. Pages 14 III EMPLOYEES & PATIENTS/ CLIENTS PROTECTION 1 - Warning system/ official information - Identify systems to warn employees and patients/clients not to come into the office/agency in the event of an emergency (fan out system- calls, s, texts, social media.) Pages And if on site how best to take protective action: evacuation, shelter-in-place or lockdown. - Make sure the fire alarm system is tested regularly; identify and train fire wardens. - Identify a system to warn everyone to evacuate, shelter-in-place or lockdown; train multiple employees to use these systems. Be sure a list with emergency contacts is posted at every telephone (fire, police and emergency medical services). - Determine ways to receive accurate and timely information: monitor TV or radio news reports, LHIN 24/7 contact number. 2 - Emergency planning for Employees and communications - Each employee must know what to do if there is an emergency. Use all the appropriated tools (newsletters, Intranet, hard copy in the kitchen, short staff meeting) to communicate emergency information, plans and procedures, on a regular basis. - Promote family disaster planning for employees at home; create a culture of preparedness. Page 21 - Keep updated contact information of each employee. Build a fan-out system, including a clear process with accountability of triggering the fan-out system. Test it on a regular basis to ensure it is reliable. - Designate a phone number where employees can call and leave an I m OK message and receive instructions. - After a disaster, consider offering professional counselors to help co-workers address their fears and anxieties. In a community disaster, consider that your employees will need time to ensure the wellbeing of their family members. 3 - Emergency planning for patients/clients, contractors, partners - Same process of planning, communications and culture of preparedness: Each person needs and needs to be contacted in case of emergency and to know whom to contact. - Keep updated contact information and daily needs of each patient/client. - Test the plan you have built based on HIRA.

4 4 - Emergency planning for people with disabilities/ special needs - While disasters and emergencies affect everyone, their impact on people with disabilities/special needs is often compounded by factors such as electrical power, elevators, accessible transportation and communication all of which can be compromised in emergency situations. - Create a support network for each person with disabilities/special needs, develop an individual emergency plan and prepare an emergency kit with this support network. Emergency Preparedness Guide for People with Disabilities/Special Needs may be found at: Appendix X7 5 - During an emergency The most important consideration when an emergency occurs is the safety of everyone within the facility. Depending on the nature and level of the emergency your organization will face several options. Pages 11; Evacuation plan - A fire, chemical spill, bomb threat or other hazard inside your location may require prompt evacuation. The ability to evacuate workers, clients/patients, visitors as quickly as possible can save lives. Make sure everyone can hear the warning system (fire alarm) know all emergency exits. Pre-select an assembly area where everyone can gather outside the location to identify any missing persons: coordinate planning in advance with the building manager if you occupy multitenant building. Shelter-in-place plan There are situations when it s best to shelter inside the location (tornados, flooding, transportation accident that releases chemicals into the air, etc.). Identify protected space within the location where you can shutdown heating, ventilation, AC systems and keep monitoring news reports to obtain timely and accurate information including any instruction to evacuate the building after the disaster. Lockdown plan In a situation where an individual or group has gained access to your location with the intent of harming people a lockdown warning should be broadcast and authorities notified. Employees should be instructed to immediately lock or secure themselves and their space, hide and remain silent until help arrives. Emergency supplies When you are planning and preparing for emergencies, do not forget to identify the supplies required for your onsite emergency kit to help you stay in business and serving your patients/clients. Evaluate options such as portable generators for backup power and strategies to deal with interruptions of electricity, natural gas, water, oil, sewage, telecommunications, etc.

5 IV TRAINING, EVALUATION AND IMPROVEMENT Frequently practice what you intend to do during a disaster. (Fan out system, evacuation, etc.) Include disaster training in employee orientation programs. Conduct regularly scheduled education/training sessions. - The planning team should conduct periodic tabletop exercises using a hypothetical disaster: what are the risks, how employees could be protected, how assets could be preserved, how services could be delivered and how recovery could be hastened. Pages 15; Weaknesses should be analyzed and the plan revised to include needed improvements. - Review and update your plans at least annually and inform your employees of the changes. One last thing: Planning should be realistic! Time invested in creating a scenario will promote individual and team readiness.

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